We did the same thing, too. There were train tracks back there, too, and we'd put pennies on it then go back and find them later, and dare each other to run up and touch the freight trains. We built a raft in the pond, picked wild blackberries, built tree forts, etc, without any adults around. Would have ruined it! You'd hear parents starting to yell for kids about dusk. It makes me sad that kids now don't get as much freedom. I also did the driving thing on my dad's lap. It was a relatively small town around here at the time, though.